Monday, March 02, 2009

Spectacular car crash on the freeway!

Well, actually, it was as boring as a crash can be, and that's good because I was in it. :) Last Friday I needed to visit my parents' house. I'd meant to leave earlier, but it was almost 4 pm when I finally set out north on the 605 and got caught in that rush hour traffic that can move along at a fast pace and then suddenly stop dead.

I was waiting at such a stop when the car ahead of me began to move. I was just about to start moving myself when WHAM!-- my car lurched forward. It took a few seconds for my head to clear enough for me to realize I'd been rear-ended. Fortunately I wasn't hurt; the airbag didn't even go off. I looked behind me-- a girl about my own age was the culprit. I quickly tried to memorize her license plate, but fortunately she was not inclined to run and we both made our way across four lanes of traffic to the side where we got out of our cars.

"I am so sorry," were her first words. "That's okay," I said. I wasn't angry; it was tricky traffic and I'd much rather be the one hit than the one feeling guilty about causing an accident.

"I didn't see you," she went on, "my boyfriend just said, 'You're going to hit!' and I tried to stop...."

The boyfriend was sitting motionless in the passenger seat, where he remained the entire time. I felt sorry for the girl that he didn't get out and stand by her and say, "Sorry about that," to me. He wasn't at fault, but he could have taken responsibility anyway, just to be supportive and draw some heat away from his girlfriend. Maybe give her a comforting squeeze on the arm at that rotten moment of her life. Would have been a chivalrous thing to do.

My bumper had certainly seen better days; it was bent and detached from the car. :-\ The girl and I traded insurance info. A policewoman arrived and started a report on the incident and had us wait in our cars for safety while she called stuff in.

So I sat in my driver's seat and caught my breath and wondered if my neck would be stiff in the morning, and felt very thankful that nothing worse had happened. I've been rear-ended once before, and once an SUV backed into me and crumpled my front bumper (he didn't see me and I was too surprised and paralyzed to honk my horn), so I'd like to think I've fulfilled my lifetime quota of fender-benders and will never have another. :)

Then something occurred to me. Normally when I drive anywhere on the freeway, I pray a Rosary as soon as I start. It's usually the only time I get around to it all day. A friend at church gave me a Rosary bracelet a year ago, and although at the time I almost resented her suggestion that I ought to cram yet more prayer into my life, now I use it nearly ever day.

But this time I was hyped up when I got in my car, thinking about my fun evening plans, and I decided, "No... I'm too excited to pray right now. Let's just listen to some good music." So the Kyrie of Mozart's Requiem Mass was playing when the girl crashed into me. Make of that what you will.

Obviously I am NOT saying that God decided to whack me because I wasn't praying. But I do believe I'm likely to be a bit more motivated now to pray the Rosary on car journeys. That is all. :)


Meg said...

Thank God you're okay!

Make sure you don't feel any pain in your neck and back during the next week or two. If you do, seek medical attention ASAP!

My gratitude to your Guardian Angel! :)

AlephGamma said...

I usually get elated during the "Tuba Mirum" so it would be a major bummer to get in an accident during that for me. Thank God your OK.

Gary Keith Chesterton said...

We're all very happy no one was hurt!

JimAroo said...

Mozart's Requiem, Car Crash, Lent.
Are we getting a theme here?

Anonymous said...

Hey JimAroo ... hello! And, Rachel, I'm very glad you are okay. Here's an article you might find interesting regarding a car crash/rosary/holy card. Link.

Net from

Mary Rose said...

I am so glad you are okay! I often pray the rosary in my car, too. (for the same reason) Sometimes life just happens. However, it seems that your response to this gal may have at least made her feel a little less like an idiot since you weren't screaming at her.

She definitely needs a new boyfriend.

Rachel Gray said...

Thanks very much, everyone! Net, now that I'm back on the Web I'll check out that article.

Pam H. said...

Praying the rosary while driving definitely prevents accidents. Once while doing just that, a fellow believed I'd cut him off (actually, he was in a lane that was supposed to merge, yielding to through traffic, and he didn't) tried afterwards to force me to rear-end him. Without planning a course of action, I sailed through the yellow light, right past him, into safety, and he was left stopped at the light which just then turned red, with traffic passing in front of him. I thanked Mother and my angel.